“You know, I’m not sitting here – some little woman standing by my man like Tammy Wynette. I’m sitting here because I love him, and I respect him, and I honor what he’s been through and what we’ve been through together. And you know, if that’s not enough for people, then heck, don’t vote for him.”
The above is the now famous or infamous (perhaps depending on your political persuasion) proclamation made by Hillary Clinton in January 1992 during a “60 Minutes” interview with her husband, then-governor of Arkansas Bill Clinton by her side. It was Hillary, pre-first lady, pre-New York senator, pre-presidential candidate and pre-secretary of state.
Twenty years later another woman aspiring to occupy the White House as First Lady seems to be more embracing of the lyrics of the legendary country standard.
“Well, I feel like all he’s (Obama) doing is saying, `Let’s kill this guy,”” Ann Romney said during a taped interview with CBS’s “This Morning” last week.
“Not when I’m next to him you better not,” she added with her husband by her side.
Ann Romney has been very prominent in her husband’s campaign; she comes across natural on the stump (unlike her husband), she is charismatic (unlike her husband) and she seems very likable (unlike her husband).
Too bad she’s not running for president instead of her husband.
“I feel like Mitt’s got the answers to turn this country around. He’s the one that’s got to bring back hope for this country, which is what they ran on last time. But the truth is, this is the one that has the hope for the – for America,” she said during the CBS interview.
Too bad Mitt Romney has provided very few of those answers for the American people on any subject.
Following the Supreme Court’s decision on the Affordable Care Act, the very conservative and emphatically anti-Obama Wall Street Journal, delivered a scathing editorial indictment of the Romney campaign. The WSJ specifically characterized the Romney camp’s response to the decision as “confused” and “politically dumb.”
The newspaper also lambasted the campaign for implementing a four-corners offense when they are actually behind by every conceivable metric (except the ability to raise money) in the 2012 campaign.
“The Romney campaign thinks it can play it safe and coast to the White House by saying the economy stinks and it’s Mr. Obama’s fault,” the WSJ argues. “We’re on its email list and the main daily message from the campaign is that “Obama isn’t working.” Thanks, guys, but Americans already know that. What they want to hear from the challenger is some understanding of why the President’s policies aren’t working and how Mr. Romney’s policies will do better.”
As critical as the WSJ is of Romney, they certainly want the former Massachusetts governor to beat President Obama in November.
Ann Romney’s support of her husband is understandably more visceral.
The Obama campaign drove the Romney as Richie Rich narrative to another level this week. The Chicago machine focused on Romney’s Swiss bank accounts and Bahamian corporations and lack of tax transparency. Ann Romney, even as her horse qualified for the 2012 Olympics in dressage (!), continues to insist her husband is just a regular guy; not out of touch, or wooden or robotic.
In April during an interview on WBAL radio here in Baltimore, the interviewer asked her about her husband’s reputation for being “stiff.” Ann Romney laughed and offered a somewhat unsettling response.
“Well, you know, I guess we better unzip him and let the real Mitt Romney out because he is not,” she said before she rambled on.
“You know, it is so funny to me that this is the perception out there. Because he is funny, he is engaging, he is witty…he is always playing jokes,” she said.
“That’s why I like to get out there, and get people to see the other side of Mitt…and you know, just what a super guy he is. That’s part of what I am doing, is letting people see the other side of Mitt.”
It seems clear Ann Romney loves her husband very much and she wants America to do the same.
She has an uphill battle.